The Center for School Behavioral Health (the Center) at Mental Health America of Greater Houston serves as a “living laboratory” for incubating innovative, cost-effective and replicable best practices to improve the behavioral health of students by facilitating collective action; providing highly specialized professional development opportunities, technical assistance and community education; and conducting research, advocacy, and policy analysis. The Center transforms school behavioral health to support the healthy psychological and cognitive development of children in the Greater Houston region through services and programs promoting behavioral health, as well as the prevention, early identification, and treatment of behavioral health disorders.
Integrated health care – the coordination of physical and behavioral health care services – is a core component of MHA of Greater Houston’s work. Although physical and mental health are linked, our health care system has traditionally addressed them separately. Integrated health care aims to abolish this separation, an important step in providing access to and normalizing behavioral health treatment. Individuals with behavioral health disorders often have physical health conditions as well, and vice versa. Behavioral health needs are most often presented first in a primary care setting, yet research shows that approximately half of those individuals with behavioral health disorders go undiagnosed in primary care. Integrated health care has emerged as a model for more effective and efficient health care for mind and body, and it is gaining recognition in Texas as a viable way to improve people’s health by treating physical and behavioral illnesses together.
MHA of Greater Houston is leading and supporting a Women’s Mental Health collaborative effort to significantly improve the mental health outcomes of mothers of new babies in Greater Houston.
Health and mental health professionals, mothers and those who deliver care or services to mothers and their young children have come together to implement this city-wide program that seeks specifically to:
Longer term, the goal is to increase the number of mothers, especially those who are low income, that seek help for PPD in the Greater Houston area.
Since 2007, the Houston-Harris County Veterans Behavioral Health Program (VBHP) at MHA of Greater Houston strives to ensure that our veterans behavioral health needs are met. As the Regional Coordinator for the State of Texas’ Military Veteran Peer Network, we connect service members, veterans and their families to local, state and national resources. As the mentoring arm for Harris County Veterans Treatment Courts we engage justice involved veterans with peer-to-peer support, health and wellness activities, and also connect them to supportive services through our trained volunteers. Through its Veterans Court Advocacy and Mentoring Program, VBHP also provides behavioral health education to volunteer veteran court mentors statewide.
Legislative Advocacy and Public Policy at MHA of Greater Houston helps transform mental health in Greater Houston. We build support for public policies to protect and to improve mental health services, increase access to quality mental health services in the public sector, and support effective recovery services for adults and children/adolescents with mental illness. As a recognized leader in mental health advocacy in Greater Houston and in Texas, we engage in developing and/or providing grassroots input into policies, building and participating in coalitions, and ensuring that the personal experience of those affected by mental illness are part of the public policy and advocacy process.
Building resiliency is our priority. MHA of Greater Houston offers a variety of workshops and presentations including Mental Health First Aid, Mental Health 101, WRAP (Wellness Recovery and Action Plan), and Mental Health and Self Care. Most workshops and CEUs (LMSW, LCSW, LPC, LMFT) are offered at NO COST. A health or mental health care background is not required to participate. Visit the website for details.